No matter where you go across this country, you’ll find people lending a hand — at the school down the street, the food bank around the corner, the community centre across town.
It’s who we are as Canadians. And now, more than ever, it’s something we have to stand up for.
In a world that is becoming more divided, choosing to stick by each other isn’t just brave, it’s non-negotiable. It’s up to us to defend what we know to be true — that we are stronger together. That everyone deserves a chance at success and that no one should be left behind.
That’s what Canadians believe in. And that’s what our team believes in, too.
When I first ran for office more than a decade ago, I met parents who were worried about making ends meet. I talked to people who had worked hard their entire life, but were concerned about whether they would have enough to retire.
I got into politics because I believed it was time they had a government standing up for them, not one that was looking out for the wealthiest 1 per cent. A government focused on the middle class and on helping people build a good life for themselves and their families.
That’s what we believe in. So it’s what we promised Canadians in 2015. And it’s what we have worked for every day since. Fighting for the middle class is about real people: the woman at the grocery store, the dad at soccer practice. It’s about people like the Chauhan family in Scarborough.
Mr. and Mrs. Chauhan have a lot on their plate. After all, life gets pretty expensive when you are raising three kids and taking care of an elderly parent. But they have never given up on the Canadian dream. And neither have I.
Our government introduced the Canada Child Benefit so that once the bills are paid, the Chauhans still have a bit left over for after-school activities. And to help Mr. Chauhan’s mom, we increased Old Age Security to make it easier to pay for her special diet plan.
We promised to be in their corner. To always keep working for families like them, from coast to coast to coast.
Those parents I met a decade ago in Montreal who were worried about making ends meet? They now have more money in their pockets to help with everyday expenses.
The people who were up at night thinking about retirement? They can rest easier thanks to a more generous Canada Pension Plan.
That’s what politics should be about — helping people.
But even if making life better for the middle class sounds like a no-brainer, it’s not something we can take for granted. It’s something we have to keep fighting for, every day. After all, people in the GTA are seeing what happens when politicians run on a promise to be “for the people,” and then turn around and cut the services they rely on: health care, child care, education.
You can’t cut your way to prosperity. You have to invest in people.
We still have lots of work to do, and our kids, our neighbours, and our fellow Canadians are counting on us to keep moving forward.
When I talk to people from Toronto to Calgary to St. John’s, they’re concerned about being able to afford a home, and getting stuck in traffic.
They’re worried about climate change, and how fundamental rights are coming under attack.
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Those are big challenges, but we’re not powerless. Together, we can decide to do something about it. Together, we can decide to keep building a better today and a brighter tomorrow.
Forward or backward. That’s an important choice to make, and I know where I stand.
I’m for choosing forward.